Dead pond in Kampung Suba, Bau revived, promising supplier of red tilapia

Henry (seated right) during his visit to the Community Pond Project at Kampung Suba, Bau on April 3, 2021.

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By Ling Hui

KUCHING, April 5: A dead freshwater pond that has been abandoned for donkey’s years  in Kampung Suba, Bau near here has finally come to life and is producing red tilapia for sale.

Tasik Biru assemblyman Dato Henry Harry Jinep said the nine-month-old Community Pond Project whereby the pond was restructured for fish farming since July, 2020 has generated a profit of RM3,000 from 2,000 fish in its first harvest.

Satisfied with the performance, he said another 12 fish cages and an engined boat would be supplied to the committee managing the project, on top of the current four cages and one fibre boat.

“We will add another 12 fish cages and one unit of engined boat to the participants involved,” he said when visiting the project site at Kampung Suba, Bau last Saturday (April 3).

Installation of fish cages at Kampung Suba pond back in July, 2020.

Tasik Biru special officer Jack Oduin said Henry was the one who initiated this project to revive the pond that no one laid eyes on for years.

Sometime before July last year, he said, the assemblyman submitted an application to the Sarawak Agricultural Department under the Agriculture Facilitation Fund (AFF) and obtained the villagers some allocations for the cages, fish feeds, fertilisers and other necessary infrastructure.

“He spent about RM30,000 on the infrastructure and the revenue generated is only RM3,000. If you’re looking at the economies of scale, this is a total failure but this is not the case.

“The pond has been revived and it provides economic benefits to the people for years to come. The once-abandoned pond is now alive and producing,” he told DayakDaily when contacted today.

With the second upgrade to the fish farm, he said confidently that more income would for sure be generated in coming years, especially with about 10,000 fish fry currently growing in the pond.

He also emphasised that these fishes are being reared in freshwater, so they do not taste of mud when consumed and this is a big win.

Condition of the abandoned pond before the rejuvenation project into a fish farm.

Meanwhile, Kampung Suba village chief Charles Ini said apart from the profits, the pond and fish farming serve as excitement or entertainment for the people in the village.

“The good spirit is that every time we do the feeding and harvesting, we enjoy the excitement, the thrill.

“Before this, the return was not good. It was a lot of work but no fish. This time around with the cage system, it is so easy to manage and we ourselves enjoy eating the fish too,” he said in an exclusive interview over the phone earlier today.

Touching on the committee managing the fish farm, he said the members have grown to over 30 now and many past members are showing interests in rejoining the committee after seeing promising returns.

Looking at future plans, he added, the committee may be opened to the neighbouring villages as well for anybody who is interested and is willing to participate in all the fishing activities. — DayakDaily